The Polaris Music Prize, established in 2006, is an annual award honoring albums by Canadian artists, based on artistic merit rather than sales. But what about all those great Canadian albums that came out before the Polaris Music Prize existed? Well, those records also get some love, courtesy of the Polaris Heritage Prize.
The Heritage award, which was first presented last year, is for albums that would likely have been nominated for the Polaris Prize had it been around back in the day. Ten albums are nominated from each of four time periods: 1960-1975, 1976-1985, 1986-1995 and 1996-2005.
This year's nominees in the 1960-1975 period include Joni Mitchell's Court and Spark, Neil Young's Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere and After the Gold Rush, The Band's Music from Big Pink and its self-titled effort, Gordon Lightfoot's Lightfoot! and Leonard Cohen's Songs of Leonard Cohen.
In other time periods, albums by Sarah McLachlan, Rush, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, Bruce Cockburn, Alanis Morissette and Daniel Lanois are among the nominees.
Two albums in each time period will win: one voted by fans, the other by critics. You can vote now at PolarisPrize.ca. Winners will be announced October 24.
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